20090729 bing microsoft yahoo web sites 18
The Web sites of Bing, Microsoft and Yahoo are displayed on a computer monitor in San Anselmo, Calif. - 


Steve Chiotakis: We're expecting in the next few minutes the Federal Communications Commission chairman to announce proposed new rules to govern Internet traffic. The rules would require what's known as net neutrality. From Washington, Marketplace's Tamara Keith tells us what that means.

Tamara Keith: Julius Genachowski, the FCC chairman, doesn't want Internet service providers like AT&T, Verizon or Comcast to be able to block or slow down Web traffic to certain sites. Some providers have slowed service sites like those with video streaming or file sharing.

Art Brodky is with Public Knowledge, which has been pushing for net neutrality rules:

Art Brodky: What it means for us is some certainty in using the Internet.

Companies like Google and Amazon support the idea. But the major telecom firms say it could stand in the way of innovation. The FCC could vote on the proposed rules as soon as October.

But Brodky expects a fight -- at the FCC, in Congress and most likely in the courts:

Brodky: You can believe that all the lobbyists are starting to, you know, buy their Christmas presents early for this one, because there's going to be a lot of money being spent trying to get this thing stopped.

Net neutrality is something President Obama supported during his campaign.

In Washington, I'm Tamara Keith for Marketplace.